Tag Archives: shell

Shell says theft allegations against its terminal is misleading.

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OML 29 includes the 97-kilometer NCTL which has capacity to lift up to 180,000 barrels per day of crude from oilfields in Bayelsa and Rivers to the Bonny terminal.

The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC) says allegations of involvement in oil theft at its Bonny Crude Export Terminal is misleading.

Noble Reporters Media reports that a 2 million barrels crude deficit between 2016 and 2018 reported at the Bonny terminal operated by SPDC has caused a dispute amongst several oil firms that use the oil export facility.

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Aiteo Exploration and Production Company claimed that SPDC shortchanged it of 1,022,029 barrels of crude while using the Bonny Crude Export Terminal operated by SPDC between 2016 and 2018.

Aiteo, an indigenous oil firm which acquired OML 29 for US$2.4 billion following SPDC’s 2015 divestment of its 45 per cent stake from the asset.

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OML 29 includes the 97-kilometer NCTL which has capacity to lift up to 180,000 barrels per day of crude from oilfields in Bayelsa and Rivers to the Bonny terminal.

In a statement, made available to NoRM‘s known Media on Saturday, Mr Bamidele Odugbesan, Media Relations Manager at SPDC, described the claim as factually incorrect.

“The crude theft/diversion allegation is also factually incorrect.

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“This is a distinct issue that relates to the directive by the Department of Petroleum Resources to SPDC as operator of the Bonny Oil and Gas Terminal, an asset belonging to the SPDC Joint Venture, to implement a crude re-allocation programme between injectors into the SPDC JV’s Trans Niger Pipeline and injectors into the NCTL.

“Crude allocation review and re-allocation is a normal industry practice to re-allocate previous provisional allocated volumes under the directive and supervision of DPR, and this is not an exercise resulting from crude diversion, underreporting or theft at the terminal.

“This industry practice is not peculiar to the SPDC-operated Bonny Oil and Gas Terminal alone and does not translate into any loss of volumes to the Federal Government of Nigeria.

“The re-allocation in issue was initiated by SPDC as operator of the Bonny Oil and Gas Terminal, while the DPR validated and confirmed it for implementation for the concerned oil producers.

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“Crude oil production metering and allocation are subject to specific guidelines issued by the industry regulator, DPR. SPDC strictly adheres to these guidelines and the implementation is regularly verified by the regulator,” Odugbesan stated.

NoRM learnt that SPDC, Belema Oil Ltd, Eroton E & P, Niger Delta Petroleum Resources, Total E & P and Walter Smith Petroleum Ltd use the NCTL to convey crude to the Bonny terminal and are proportionately affected by the deficit.

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#Newsworthy

Top UK court ‘inflcict’ Nigeria’s decision on Shell.

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The widows of four Nigerian activists executed by the military regime of General Sani Abacha in the 1990s have accused Shell of complicity in their deaths.

Britain’s Supreme Court ruled on Friday that more than 40,000 people in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria can make pollution claims against Anglo-Dutch energy giant Shell in English courts.

The ruling overturned a 2017 decision against the Ogale and Bille communities, who brought legal claims for clean-up and compensation following decades of repeated spills in the oil-rich region.

The claimants have argued for five years that their case against Shell and its subsidiary, the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC), should be heard in London because they could not expect justice in a Nigerian court.

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The UK decision comes two weeks after a court in the Netherlands ordered Shell to compensate Nigerian farmers for oil spills on land in two villages in the Niger Delta after 13 years of legal battles.

In their judgment, five judges at Britain’s highest court said the previous decision by the lower Court of Appeal was a “material error of law” and focused too narrowly on the relationship between Shell and its Nigerian subsidiary.

Shell had argued it could not be held legally responsible for the pollution in the region in southern Nigeria and so the cases should not be heard in England.

Watershed moment’
“This Supreme Court judgment gives real hope to the people of Ogale and Bille who have been asking Shell to clean up their oil for years,” said Daniel Leader, from London law firm Leigh Day, which represents the claimants.

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He said he hoped the decision would lead to action from Shell and called the ruling a “watershed moment” to bring multinational companies to account.

In this file photo taken on September 30, 2020 Logos are pictured at a Shell petrol station in Etlham, southeast London. – Royal Dutch Shell dived into a net loss of $21.7 billion in 2020, the oil giant announced on February 4, 2021 as the coronavirus pandemic slashed global energy demand. (Photo by Ben STANSALL / AFP)

“Increasingly impoverished communities are seeking to hold powerful corporate actors to account and this judgment will significantly increase their ability to do so,” he added.

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Shell called the ruling “disappointing” and attributed the spills in the Niger Delta to criminal activity.

“The spills at issue happened in communities that are heavily impacted by oil theft, illegal oil refining, and the sabotage of pipelines,” it said in a statement.

“Regardless of the cause of a spill, SPDC cleans up and remediates.”

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The Ogale and Bille villagers say they have suffered systematic and ongoing oil pollution for decades because of Shell’s operations in Nigeria, including the pollution of drinking water.

In 2011, the United Nations Environment Programme said spills in the Niger Delta would take 30 years to clean up.

Shell has faced other legal action linked to its operations in Nigeria in Dutch court.

The widows of four Nigerian activists executed by the military regime of General Sani Abacha in the 1990s have accused Shell of complicity in their deaths.

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The men were hanged in 1995 alongside Ken Saro-Wiwa, who campaigned against Shell activities in the Ogoniland area of the delta because of health and environmental impacts.

Shell also faces a landmark legal bid to force it to meet emissions targets in the Paris climate accords, brought by several environmental groups in the Netherlands led by Friends of the Earth in 2019.

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#Newsworthy

Shell ruling: Nigerian farmers happy, …future still unclear.

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Like many others, he has been forced to move with his family to a nearby town to escape the contamination.

It has taken 13 years for Fidelis Oguru to get the victory that he and a group of other farmers in Nigeria’s oil-rich Niger Delta region so badly wanted.

On Friday, the Court of Appeal in The Hague ruled that Shell’s Nigerian subsidiary, the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC), was at fault for environmental degradation caused by pipeline leaks in the villages of Oruma and Goi in the Niger Delta region.

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The Dutch court ordered the Nigerian arm of the British-Dutch company to pay yet-to-be-decided compensation to the affected villages.

“I am very happy and I thank God,” said Oguru, an 80-year-old farmer and one of the plaintiffs from Oruma village.

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He told NoRM‘s known Media oil leaks from pipelines have devastated farmland and waterways in the region, and the SPDC’s reluctance to replace old pipelines had led farmers to watch in angst as their crops such as cassava and plantain succumbed to oil pollution and their livelihoods eroded.

Frequent appeals to the SPDC for compensation and environmental clean-up had been futile, he said.

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In 2008, four farmers from the villages of Oruma, Goi, and Ikot Ada Udo received backing from an environmental campaign group, Friends of the Earth Netherlands, to file lawsuits against Shell in a Dutch court over oil spills related to the SPDC between 2004 and 2007.

“In 2013, I went to the Netherlands when the judgement was on and the [court] ruled against us,” Oguru recalled.

SPDC and other oil companies often blame oil leaks on sabotage. Under Nigerian law, applied in the Dutch civil case, the company is not liable if the leaks were the result of sabotage.

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But on Friday the court found it could not establish “beyond a reasonable doubt” that saboteurs were to blame for leaks that spewed oil over an area of a total of about 60 football pitches in Oruma and Goi.

Although the court ruled that sabotage was to blame for an oil leak in the village of Ikot Ada Udo, it said the case over whether Shell was liable would continue.

Eric Dooh, a 50-year-old plaintiff from Goi, told NoRM‘s known Media the victory meant “oppressed people” such as farmers from the Niger Delta can take their “rightful place in society”.

He said the ruling sets a “world-class precedent” that could a be a turning point to give hope to those who have similar cases against multinational oil companies that they can get justice regardless of “the number of years and tribulations that they have been going [through]”.

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“Other multinational companies must also know that they must adhere to international best practices in their oil exploration activities and respect fundamental human rights,” he said.

“The victory is not for only me,” Dooh added. “It is for the entire Niger Delta region.”

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Nnimmo Bassey, a Nigerian environmental activist, also believes Friday’s ruling is the beginning of “a process that should bring hope … [because] lies told by the [oil] industry cannot hold water forever”.

“The victory means no matter how long an injustice prevails, justice must come one day and it means that the people did not persist for nothing for 13 years,” Bassey, former executive director of Environmental Rights Action, a local advocacy NGO, told NoRM‘s known Media.

A boy with a fishnet stands on the oil stained bank of a creek near Goi, Nigeria [File: Martin Van Dijl/EPA]

Shell discovered and started exploiting Nigeria’s vast oil reserves in the late 1950s and has long faced heavy criticism over oil pollution and for allegedly close and enabling ties to the government.

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Bassey said vast swaths of the Niger Delta remain “sacrifice zones” and there are still oil spills and contamination on a daily basis in many areas. He also cited a fire at an oil well in Ondo State that has been raging since May with “no stoppage, no clean-up”.

The only place a serious effort is being made to carry out an environmental clean-up in the Niger Delta is in Ogoniland, Bassey said, and even that is “very tentative and not yet comprehensive”.

Meanwhile, Shell said it was dismayed by Friday’s ruling as it believes the spills were caused by sabotage.

“We are … disappointed that this court has made a different finding on the cause of these spills and in its finding that SPDC is liable,” the company said in a statement.

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The SPDC said in a statement: “Like all Shell-operated ventures globally, we are committed to operating safely and protecting the local environment.”

But Bassey said sabotage had been ruled out in many instances of oil pollution in the Niger Delta.

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“Saying the spill was caused by sabotage was a formula for escaping responsibility, which has to be debunked,” he said.

Despite the ruling, Dooh lamented the damage done – he said oil leaks in Goi had ruined his fish farm and destroyed his father’s bakery.

“It has been very difficult and hectic for me to cope,” he said.

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The successful plaintiffs are now waiting to see how much compensation they will receive.

Dooh said he hopes to use the funds to restore his damaged land and businesses, as well as building a school.

Oil on the creek water’s surface near an illegal refinery in Ogoniland, outside Port Harcourt, in Nigeria’s Delta region [File: Sunday Alamba/AP]

“If I reinvest [in my village], it will give me the opportunity of creating job opportunities for the people.”

But for Oguru the compensation will likely come too late.

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He said Shell had destroyed all of the land he used for his fish farms. “The loss [caused by the spill] has given me a very bad setback that has affected my means of livelihood – farming and fishing,” Oguru said.

In 2018, he started developing eye problems and became blind in 2020. His age and health problems will likely prevent him from using the compensation to restore his land.

“I am stranded.”

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#Newsworthy

Shell dives to $18.1bn quarter 2 loss

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Anglo-Dutch energy major Royal Dutch Shell posted Thursday a colossal net loss of $18.1 billion (15.4 billion euros) for the second quarter, blaming massive asset writedowns on the coronavirus-hit oil market.

The performance, contrasting sharply with profit after tax of $3.0 billion a year earlier, was sparked by a huge $16.8-billion charge on chronic fallout both from COVID-19 and collapsing oil prices.

The vast charge was taken “as a result of revised medium- and long-term price and refining margin outlook assumptions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and macroeconomic conditions as well as energy market demand and supply fundamentals,” Shell said in a results statement.

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The quarterly performance meanwhile reflected lower prices for oil, liquefied natural gas (LNG) and gas, while it was also adversely impacted by lower refining margins and oil products sales volumes.

Production dipped six percent to 3.4 million barrels of oil equivalent per day in the reporting period — and is forecast to drop further in the third quarter.

“Shell has delivered resilient cash flow in a remarkably challenging environment,” said Chief Executive Ben van Beurden in Thursday’s statement.

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“We continue to focus on safe and reliable operations and our decisive cash preservation measures will underpin the strengthening of our balance sheet.”

The energy giant had already forecast in June that it would face a charge of between $15 billion and $22 billion in the second quarter, after crude futures had suffered a spectacular crash on COVID-19 fallout, the Saudi-Russia price war and oversupply.

Both Shell and British rival BP, which reports its earnings next week, have opted to book charges in the second quarter on sustained coronavirus fallout that ravaged the world’s appetite for crude oil.

Shell had already plunged into the red in the first quarter of this year on the back of the oil price crash, which prompted it to cut its shareholder dividend for the first time since the 1940s.

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The deadly COVID-19 outbreak slammed the brakes on the global economy and savaged oil-intensive industries.

The outbreak also sent oil prices off a cliff from March onwards — and even caused them briefly to turn negative in April.

Prices have since rebounded sharply on an easing global crude supply glut and as governments relax lockdowns and businesses slowly reopen.

Crude futures currently stand at about $40 per barrel, which is still well down on the same stage last year.


#Newsworthy…

Breaking: Italian prosecutors seek 8-years jail term for Shell & Eni executives

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Italian prosecutors are seeking a jail term for oil majors, Eni and Shell, and some of their present and former executives, including Eni CEO, Claudio Descalzi, over their alleged involvement in a long-running trial over alleged corruption in Nigeria.

In a Milan court on Tuesday, prosecutors alleged that the two oil companies acquired a Nigerian oilfield in 2011, knowing most of the 1.3 billion dollar purchase price would go to politicians and middlemen in bribes.

The prosecutors, therefore, asked the court to pronounce an eight-year prison term for Descalzi and seven years and four months for shell’s former head of upstream Malcolm Brinded.

They are also seeking a fine of 900,000 Euros each and sought to confiscate a total of $1.092 billion from all the defendants in the case, the equivalent of the bribes alleged to have been paid.

The companies and individuals accused in the case have all denied wrongdoing in the case.


#Newsworthy ..

{Video} Bayelsa communes hold shell workers hostage.

Members of Benesede community in Bayelsa state have allegedly held some staff of Shell Petroleum Company in the state, hostage.

A media reader whose brother in-law is a staff of the company, sent in a video purportedly showing the aggrieved community members staging a protest within the facility owned by the oil corporation on Thursday evening December 19th.

She said her brother in-law whose phones have since switched off, is currently being held alongside his other colleagues. According to her, the company is yet to rescue her in-law or others held hostage.

#Newsworthy…